New satellite imagery shows that Iran has quietly deployed drones and submarines on its southern coast. It’s a sign that the Islamic Republic is expanding its naval power and looking to push American warships farther off its shores.

The satellite images, published this week by Google Earth, indicate the presence of surveillance drones and Ghadir midget submarines at Bandar-e Jask, an Iranian naval base just southeast of the strategically crucial Strait of Hormuz. The facility’s use as a drone and submarine base has not been previously reported.

Over the past few months, Iran’s military has been active on a variety of fronts across the region, supporting the Bashar al-Assad’s regime’s bloody crackdown against rebels in Syria, helping the Iraqi government and Shiite militias face off against Islamic State jihadists, in Iraq and reportedly providing limited support to Houthi rebels in Yemen. […]